Translating Shakespeare for the Twenty-First Century

Translating Shakespeare for the Twenty-First Century

Translating Shakespeare for the Twenty-First Century

Translating Shakespeare for the Twenty-First Century


Most of the contributions to Translating Shakespeare for the Twenty-First Century evolve from a practical commitment to the translation of Shakespearean drama and at the same time reveal a sophisticated awareness of recent developments in literary criticism, Shakespeare studies, and the relatively new field of Translation studies. All the essays are sensitive to the criticism to which notions of the original as well as distinctions between the creative and the derivative have been subjected in recent years. Consequently, they endeavour to retrieve translation from its otherwise subordinate status, and advance it as a model for all writing, which is construed, inevitably, as a rewriting. This volume offers a wide range of responses to the theme of Shakespeare and translation as well as Shakespeare in translation.


Rui Carvalho Homem

“There has never been a better time to study translations”: Susan Bassnett's confident assertion appeared in an article published in 1996, in a context in which it could already be received as a consensual confirmation of a state of affairs – rather than as another militant bid on behalf of the emerging discipline which Bassnett had so often championed in the preceding decade. If anything, the field of Translation studies, with its predominantly theoretical bent, as well as the practical study of translations from a variety of disciplinary standpoints, have since acquired an even greater centrality in theory, criticism, and academia. Conferences are held under titles that stress the extent to which translation has become “a crossroads of disciplines” ; and the breadth and diversity of contributions at such events (as in the ensuing publications) confirm and further George Steiner's remark of more than a quarter of a century ago, that “the study of the theory and practice of translation […] provides a synapse for work in

Susan Bassnett, “The Meek or the Mighty: Reappraising the Role of the Trans
lator,” in Translation, Power, Subversion, edited by Román Álvarez and Carmen-África
Vidal (Clevedon: Multilingual Matters, 1996), 10–24 (p. 22).

The title of an international conference held at the Faculty of Letters, University
of Lisbon, Portugal, 14–15 November 2002.

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